Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI), in consortium with Foster Wheeler Energy Limited of the UK, has received an order from E.ON UK plc, to support the front-end engineering design (FEED) for a post-combustion carbon dioxide (CO2) capture plant proposed as part of E.ON's planned new supercritical coal-fired power station in Kent, England, UK. The order comes on the heels of the earlier pre-FEED phase awarded by E.ON UK in June 2009. It follows the recent announcement by the UK Government's Department of Energy and Climate Change that E.ON has progressed to the next stage of it's competition comprised of a FEED study. E.ON UK is one of two groups competing in the UK Government's competition to build one of the world's first industrial-scale carbon capture and storage demonstration plants.
E.ON plans to build a CCS facility at its proposed new Kingsnorth Power Station in Kent. The planned new 1,600 MW (megawatt) supercritical coal-fired power generation plant will replace the existing coal-fired units. E.ON plans to separate, recover and compress the CO2 from the coal-fired flue gas and to store it within a depleted gas reservoir in the North Sea.
The overall FEED activities will further develop the proposed CO2 capture and compression project at Kingsnorth and will involve engineering and design studies, following which the competition winner will be selected by the UK Government.
MHI's CO2 recovery technology is known as the KM-CDR Process™. It uses the company's proprietary KS-1 solvent for CO2 absorption and desorption, which MHI and the Kansai Electric Power Co., Inc. developed jointly. MHI's KM-CDR Process requires considerably lower energy consumption than other technologies and its performance has been highly evaluated. To date MHI has delivered seven commercial plants for CO2 recovery from natural gas-fired flue gas - besides two plants are currently being designed and constructed - making MHI the leader in large-scale CO2 recovery facilities.
In the area of CO2 recovery from coal-fired flue gas, which contains more impurities, MHI has already conducted small-scale demonstration testing for CO2 recovery from coal-fired flue gas at 10 tons/day from 2006 through 2008, and confirmed uninterrupted stable operation. The company is also constructing a 500 tons/day demonstration plant for Southern Company, which is targeted to begin operation in 2011.
For its participation in the CCS demonstration project calling for CO2 recovery from the flue gas of a coal-fired generation plant, MHI looks to propose a reliable and economically viable technology that is applicable to large-scale CCS for coal-fired plants. Simultaneously it aims to vigorously pursue business expansion in this area while also contributing to global efforts to reduce greenhouse gases.